Carlos’ Law: Proposed Legislation for Construction Worker Safety

Have you heard about the proposed legislation entitled Carlos’ Law?  Well, if you have not, it is a Construction Worker Safety bill that is being championed by Sen. Jose Peralta (D-East Elmhurst),  Sens. Toby Ann Stavisky (D-Flushing) and Tony Avella (D-Bayside), and 4 other co-sponsors. 

Carlos’ Law, known officially as S.4373B, would increase fines and penalties against a developer who does not comply with safety protocols and contributes to the injury or death of a construction worker. It is named for Carlos Moncayo who was buried alive on a Manhattan construction site when an unreinforced trench caved in on him.

Carlos’ Law, if passed, would apply when a death or serious injury is determined to be a result of criminal conduct.  The proposed changes include increasing the maximum fine for felony convictions to $500,000 from the current $10,000 and increasing the maximum fine of $5,000 for misdemeanors to $300,000. 

According to a 2013 report by the Center for Popular Democracy, three out of four victims in fatal construction accidents in the United States between 2003 and 2011 were immigrants or U.S.-born citizens of Latino heritage.  “Among the cases investigated by (the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration) in New York state that number is 60 percent,” Senator Peralta said. “In New York City it’s 74 percent. And in Queens it’s 88 percent.” Therefore, the proposed Carlos’ Law and improving worker safety on construction sites are of great importance to the Hispanic Community. 

If you are injured while working at a construction site, please contact FOA Law today so we can answer all your questions, address your concerns, and discuss eligibility for Workers’ Compensation benefits.


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